Roped In, my very first published romance, I was not a big fan of rope. I liked it in principle, loved the lines it made, and the marks it can make on skin. I loved its flexibility. But for restraining someone, it just seemed like it took too darn long. I found knots hard to memorize. My mind does not work well in three-dimensions, especially when things to under other things and then over and so on. Since I was doing more tying than being tied at that point, usually with someone who was not exactly long on patience, the time it took to tie the knots, plus the likelihood that I was going to tie them wrong and have to do it over, sucked a lot of the fun out of the experience. Velcro cuffs went on quick and easy and in a few seconds wrists and ankles were where I wanted them and staying there.
Rope, however, was perfect for Bruce, the hero of that book. He was patient, and all about being in the moment of doing bondage rather than rushing through to the end. That's the right mentality for rope, and I learned to adopt it myself well after I wrote the book. Giving or receiving, rope is a sensual experience. It feels lovely running across the skin (unless you run it across the skin too fast, then it's called rope burn.) There's a learning curve for knots, but that just means that a given tie is going to take longer -- and that means one is playing longer with the rope, and that's a good thing! Rather than rushing through it when I was doing the tying, I learned to take my time and enjoy the experience.
I've learned a bit more about types of rope. Nylon is nice and smooth, and doesn't leave marks, but can give you a nasty rope burn if you're too fast with it. Hemp is rough, and leaves marks. Cotton clothesline is cheap, but I don't like it on me so I don't really want to put it on anyone else. Bamboo Silk is heavenly and soft, but expensive and hard to find. Regardless, rope doesn't just feel sexy, it looks sexy... check out the cover for On Location. Kyle isn't a patient dom like Bruce, but he still has a way with rope because he likes the way he can make it as tight as he wants.
One of my pleasures is writing about submissives and Doms that are all different, and have different approaches to BDSM and their relationship. It's fun to figure out how they'll make it work. There's no one true way to do anything in BDSM, and I think that's an important message. There are times when a very fast restraint like handcuffs or Velcro is hotter than a long session tying knots. But I expect that more of my Doms and submissives are going to be do their bondage with rope, and fewer are going to be using Velcro cuffs, in the future.